The Chilterns MS Centre has recently completed major improvement work on its hydrotherapy pool to help make it more energy efficient and reduce water wastage.
The £25,000 project, funded partly by a grant from the Clothworkers’ Foundation, involved several upgrades including the installation of an upgraded chemical dosing system, variable speed pump drives, digital flow meter and UV (ultraviolet light) filter. It is anticipated that the variable speed pump drives alone will lead to savings of £15,000 per year as the pumps can be slowed down, or stopped altogether, during period of low usage.
All these upgrades will help maintain water quality in a way that is more cost-effective and environmentally friendly. Having more efficient ways of maintaining the water quality means less time needs to be spent on cleaning processes and more time is available for people to benefit from using the pool.
- The chemical dosing system measures and precisely controls set levels of sanitiser (chlorine) and pH balance (acid) through feedback from inline sensors. This ensures the safest possible swimming conditions.
- The variable speed drive enables the circulation rate to be reduced overnight and during low usage periods and so reduce power consumption.
- The digital flow meter provides accurate real-time flow rates used to manage the variable drives, and to ensure the flows are optimised for the UV filter.
- The UV filter provides an efficient and cost-effective method for reducing chlorine in the pool while improving water quality.
- Environmental benefits include reduced electricity and gas usage, reduced water consumption and discharge to waste, reduced chemical consumption and discharge to waste.
“The value of hydrotherapy to our members cannot be underestimated so being able to continue such an essential service but in a more sustainable way is vital,” said Terry Baldwin, Head of Facilities and Business Development. “We are extremely grateful to the Clothworkers’ Foundation for helping to make it happen.”
The pool is used for hydrotherapy which is a form of aquatic physiotherapy where the water supports the body and helps to stabilise someone with balance problems, which can be very beneficial when treating people with neurological conditions.
“The hydro pool is a lifeline for people coming to the MS Centre,” said Karen Butler-Caddle, user of the hydrotherapy service at the Chilterns MS Centre. “It’s so helpful for physiotherapy and it helps with the pain. It also gives you extra ability to stand which I wouldn’t be able to do normally on dry land.”
The Chilterns MS Centre provides treatments and services to people with MS, helping them to live life to the full. This year the Centre has begun a pilot programme to open up its services to people with other neurological conditions starting with Parkinson’s Disease and stroke survivors. If anyone with MS, Parkinson’s or who has experienced a stroke feels they would benefit from the services offered then they should get in touch with the Chilterns MS Centre by phoning 01296 696133.